Engine Rebuild Day 17 (Goodwood Track Day  - 14)

Valve Cover baffles and gaskets

Contrary to my intention yesterday I solved the rattling baffle by another route.  I cut an M5 washer through the rim and then, holding one side in the vice, opened the slot out large than the diameter of the pin, I then knocked it under the pin head and closed the washer up again with some pliers.  As the washer distorted when I opened it up (in a crinkle fashion) it filled the gap between the pin head and the baffle nicely - job done!


Knocking off some of the little jobs (which still took all day today) I checked the valve covers gaskets and fitted them under the valve covers - I used a little Evostic to hold them in place - Edelbrock recommend Gasgacinch but I can't find anyone who knows what this is - if you do please mail me an equivalent in the UK.

Spark plugs

I gapped the spark plugs to 50 thou (this is the recommended setting with MSD) and fitted them hand tight into to the heads.  I used a anti-seize compound as suggested. This is where trialling this work now has paid dividends - I found I didn't have a deep 14mm socket for the plugs.   It has to be thin walled as there is not much room around the plug - I can get one before my block is back.

Here is a picture of the cylinder head chambers with spark plug fitted. You can see the plug hole could do with de-burring and the stainless pockets for the valves are not the smoothest finish I have seen.

I removed the intake valve as it seemed to have some plasticine under the seat, there wasn't any in fact but I took this photo.  Straight on it looks odd, as if the valve guide is coming into the chamber, in reality of course its set well  back.

Exhaust Ports

As previously mentioned, the exhaust ports on these heads do not seem to have the same output size as the ones in the Edelbrock sales catalogue.  They claim it matches Fel-Pro gasket 1415 but as you can see the ports are the same width but not the same height - I deliberately arranged for the '1415' to show in the photo - maybe I should e-mail this to Edelbrock! The ports are 1.22" wide and 1.26" tall, whereas my headers are 1.25" wide and 1.575" tall a little taller than the gasket.  At this time I am not going to alter the ports.  I really need to weld up the headers near the flange but I may have to let that go for this season too.

Testing cam bearing removal and refitting

I decided to check out the mandrels I have to remove and fit cam bearings, again a learning process which should help me to avoid problems and speed up when I do the real block.  Having the cracked block has been of some use!

It did help my confidence too. Removing the old bearings took no time at all.  I should explain to the uninitiated that each of the five bearings is a different size, so 5 different mandrels are needed.  Each fits snugly inside its bearing and has a slight shoulder to push the bearing while still just clearing the inside of the housing.  (If you look at the lower left of the picture you can see sitting on top of the block another mandrel with its particular bearing on it). These mandrels have a 1/2 inch hole down the middle.  The rod seen above is supported parallel to the line of the block by using the mandrel for the front bearing as a guide.  I used a 1/2 rod of ally as a drift (but I plan to use some 1/2 stainless for the real job) and there is a 1/2 inch plug with a shoulder sitting in the mandrel in the centre of the picture to shift that bearing.  Fitting is basically the reverse of removal.  You can pass the mandrel and bearing between the bores and then turn them 90 degrees into position - they don't have to fed the whole length.

Also I think that one recommendation in the Tom Monroe book is erroneous.  He says to fit bearings 5 and 4 from the front and then fit 1 and 2 from the back, but the block clearly has a lead in from the front - so I think you should always push/pull them in from the front. He is right you need to keep the pushing/drifting bar in line with the block this can be achieved by running a bar the whole length using the front and rear bearings as a guide - this is what I plan to do on the real block.  As I say it was a very valuable trial exercise.

Tapping the block for 1/2 inch studs

I will be drilling and tapping my block to take 1/2 inch studs (the normal fixings are 7/16 bolts).  Roy lent me Brian's tapping jig (I'll be careful Brian!).  I drilled all the holes out using the jig but only tapped the four corners.

Again I learnt how the tool is supposed to work.  I drilled all the holes out but I will drill and tap them one at a time on my actual block, then the jig can be held with the new bolts.

All in all a busy day and several lessons learnt for the real thing - very hopefully later this week!